MarshMedia, which originally started in 1969, offers health focused videos to schools. The variety of videos they carry cover topics such as health, nutrition, hygiene, puberty, social-emotional issues and more. Now owned by Dan and Brenna Witcher, they are currently offering a Homeschool Special that may be of interest to families who want to utilize additional resources to teach or review these topics.
For the purpose of this review, I was given two months free access to their streaming materials. MarshMedia currently offers over 50 of their most popular titles through streaming. This gave me time to watch a variety of videos to determine what would be appropriate for my crew. My three older kids that would potentially be watching the various videos are 10, 7 and 4 years old.
MarshMedia assures that their videos do not discuss "sex education" even though that terminology is often used interchangeably with puberty and health education. Their focus is on Health and Puberty. With this focus, however, there will be references to things like intercourse or drug use, or other sensitive topics. There are clear descriptions and recommended grade levels for videos, so it shouldn't be hard to determine which videos will be appropriate for your children, but I always recommend that parents preview materials first to make final judgement calls and be prepared for discussions.
Since my children have a wide age spread and the preschooler was often present, we kept our viewing to some of the basic topics covered in the K-3 or K-5 videos, such as Wash Those Hands and Take Care of Your Skin, Hair and Nails! They were informative and educational, but not particularly full of new information. We're pretty much "learn through life" when it comes to health and hygiene, so most of the videos within their age range cover topics they are already know. The videos average 15 minutes, but they were usually slow paced, and occasionally repetitive, so my two oldest (7 and 10) felt like they got everything they could from the videos before they were over. My 4 year old enjoyed these types of videos though!
There is also a section of Character Education books, some of which are available to stream, which all feature animal protagonists and explore various challenges like bullying, sibling rivalry, or anger. I saw one title, Papa Piccolo by Carol Talley, that I recognized from my beloved early elementary curriculum. This one wasn't available for streaming, but I decided to poke around at some of the others, and these were pleasant.
The videos are definitely reminiscent of the health and puberty videos we watched in public elementary and middle school, though some seem to be relatively updated. There's nothing particularly flashy or sensationalized. They are simple and straightforward, with the sole purpose of educating. Other members of the crew are reviewing MarshMedia, so please check out more reviews for additional perspectives.
If you wish to take advantage of the opportunity to introduce the MarshMedia curriculum to your home schooler(s) click here for details.
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